Vaughn Filmer from Fiordland College, the Environmental Educator for 2017, and Blake Ambassador Will McKay, embarked the Southwest Pacific Expedition led by the Auckland Museum on board RV Braveheart. The expedition was a six-week Southwest Pacific expedition to discover more about our big blue backyard. The expedition started in southern New Caledonia and tracked through southern Fiji and Tonga, and ended in New Zealand via Rangitahua the Kermadec Islands.

A number of projects were carried out during the expedition, including a survey of predator numbers, a visual survey of whales in the region and a large-scale study to document new marine plant and animal species in the area. Follow their expedition here.

Above image: Pseudanthias pictilis – this beautiful fairy basslet was previously only known from New Caledonia and Australian waters - it’s an important new range extension into Fiji. Image credit: Mark Erdmann

A voyage of discovery

Let the expedition begin!
Let the expedition begin!

Vaughn Filmer- Environmental Educator

Octopus vs fish
Octopus vs fish

Vaughn Filmer- Environmental Educator

It's all go on the Braveheart
It's all go on the Braveheart

Vaughn Filmer- Environmental Educator

Finding fish in the Southwest Pacific
Finding fish in the Southwest Pacific

Will McKay- Blake South West Pacific Ambassador

All aboard!
All aboard!

Will McKay- Blake South West Pacific Ambassador

Touch down in Noumea
Touch down in Noumea

Will McKay- Blake South West Pacific Ambassador